Canberra carpenter and his company hit with $38,000 in penalties

A Canberra carpenter and his company have been penalised more than $38,000 after ignoring a Fair Work Commission order to pay compensation to an unfairly dismissed worker.

Canberra man Heath Wright and his company HW Carpentry Solutions Pty Ltd were ordered by the Fair Work Commission in 2014 to pay $7650 compensation to an adult apprentice tradesman they had unlawfully dismissed.

Despite multiple requests from Fair Work inspectors, Wright and his company failed to pay the compensation and the Fair Work Ombudsman commenced legal action against them in the Federal Circuit Court.

The Court has now penalised Wright $6426 and penalised his company an additional $32,136 for contravening the Fair Work Act by failing to comply with an Order of the Fair Work Commission.

Judge Warwick Neville found that the contravention was deliberate, there was a lack of contrition and that the financial difficulties of Wright's company were not an excuse.

Judge Neville ordered Wright to pay his penalty to the dismissed worker to partially meet the compensation amount owing to him.

Judge Neville also ordered Wright to complete workplace relations training on employer obligations relating to redundancies, terminations and unfair dismissal.

Source: FWO Media Release 11 January 2017

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